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Sheriff Ed McMahon


Sheriff Ed McMahon began his law enforcement career in 1988 with the Vermont State Police, where he rose to the rank of Senior Trooper.  In 1991, he and his family returned to Wilmington, where he joined the New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office. 


Sheriff Ed has worked in both the Patrol Division and the Detective Division, as a Deputy, Detective, Sergeant, Lieutenant, and Assistant Division Commander.  In 2003 he was promoted to the rank of Captain, and assigned to head the Judicial Services Division. 


In 2007 Ed was promoted to Chief Deputy, serving in that position until 2009, when Sheriff Sid Causey retired and appointed him Sheriff.  Ed was elected by the people of New Hanover County to serve as their Sheriff in 2010 and again in 2014.  In 2013, Sheriff Ed was appointed to the Seventh Congressional District Homeland Security Task Force, and graduated Chief Executive Leadership Training at the Southern Police Institute.


Sheriff Ed married his college sweetheart, Teena, in 1982, and they have two married children, Shaun and his wife Sara, and Taryn and husband Josh.  They are the proud grandparents of Braylee, Camdyn, Tenley and Sadie, whom they adore.


Sheriff Ed says, “What an honor and a privilege it is to serve and protect the citizens of this great county.  I give God the glory for His blessings on my life.  I want to be a humble and available leader, serving with Professionalism, Responsibility, and Accountability.  I would ask that each citizen join with me in praying for God’s wisdom each day, as I make decisions that affect each and every life that I serve.”




 §  1988 – Vermont Police Academy – Pittsford, Vermont

 §  1991 – Basic Law Enforcement Training – Cape Fear Community College

 §  1998 – Advance Law Enforcement Certificate – State of North Carolina

 §  1998 – Officer of the Year Award

 §  2000 – 911 Worker of the Year Award

 §  2004 – FBI National Academy – Quantico, Virginia

 §  2008 – Bachelor’s Degree in Multi-Disciplinary Studies – Liberty University

 §  2011 – Navigating Leadership Workshop – University of North Carolina –         Wilmington

 §  2012 – North Carolina Sheriff’s Leadership Institute – Chapel Hill, North Carolina

 §  2012 – National Sheriff’s Leadership Institute – Aurora, Colorado

 §  2012 – Sons of the American Revolution Law Enforcement Commendation Medal

 § 2012 - Appointed as Walk Chairman for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation

 §  2013 – Appointed to the to the Seventh Congressional District Homeland Security    Task Force

 §  2013 – Chief Executive Leadership Training – Springfield, Missouri

 §  2014 – National Jail Leadership Command Academy – Huntsville, Texas

 §  2014 – Appointed as Co-Chair for the Purple Heart Committee

 §  2014 – Appointed to the Criminal Justice/BLET Advisory Committee of CFCC

 §  2014 – Presented with the Woofie Award.  This award is presented to those who go above and beyond for the welfare of animals in the Cape Fear area.

 §  2014 – Board member of the State Purple Heart Committee

 §  2014 – Current Chair for the Cape Fear Purple Heart Committee